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“Legal education is an integral part of the judicial system. Today over 500 law colleges in India produce two lakh lawyers per year. The Five year L.L.B. Integrated Course is much sought after.”

The legal profession has been playing an increasingly meaningful role in dispensation of justice and ensuring legal order envisaged by the Constitution of India. It shall be no exaggeration to say that legal profession is most satisfying in terms of service and the most relevant to society.

Naturally, the demand for legal education is increasing day by day. In India, there has been a paradigm shift in recent years, in the attitude of the institutions imparting legal education the candidate seeking legal education and also the other players like the Bar and the Bench. Gone are the days when people used to thick that L.L.B is the last resort when all other options are exhausted. Today law legal education is recognized as a professional course on par with engineering and medicine.

At present there are more than 500 law colleges/schools in the country which produce nearly two lakh lawyers every year.

Among these colleges/schools all but the likes of National Law Schoolare traditional. The traditional law colleges are either run by the State universities as Campus colleges or by the private colleges affiliated to the universities. They are required to get their affiliation approved by the Bar Council of India periodically.

A predominant number of law colleges offer only three years LL.B. course i.e., after graduation. Few of them offer five years integrated LL.B course after 10+2.

There are many differences between the LL.B (3-YDC) and LL.B (5-YDC) in term of content of syllabus, approach of students and career opportunities after the completion of course. Several universities and law colleges are offering the five year course leading to the B.A-LL.B (Honours), which incorporate a lot of practical training and includes court attendance, legal research projects and practical work in legal centres.

The trend of students joining five-year law courses after Intermediate is growing day-by-day and the popularity of National Law Schools is an indication of it. The campus placements from these colleges with hefty pay packets indicate that young lawyers from top colleges are paid much more than engineers and doctors.

Some Leading Law Schools

Law Schools play in important role in shaping the future career in law or related fields of a student or realize that colourful and attractive brochures/ handbooks or historical antecedents of the affiliated University are not the only factor in determining the choice of the law school. The following are the important aspects to check while choosing a law school: 1) Academic Reputation 2) Quality of Students 3) Student faculty Ratio 4) Placements after completion of course 5) Quality of teaching, 6) Library and other infrastructure facilities 7) Location.

The traditional law schools in the country include University college of Law, Osmania University, Hyderabad, Government Law College Mumbai, University College of Law, Bangalore University, Campus Law Centres, Delhi University, Madras Law college, Chennai, Law College, Calcutta University and Law College, Benares Hindu University.

The private law colleges which are popular are ILS Law College, Pune, symbiosis, society’s Law College, Pune, AmityLaw School, Delhi and KC Law College, Mumbai. The National Law Schools are the National Law school of India University, Bangalore, the NALSAR Law university, Hyderabad, the West Bengal National University of Judicial Sciences, Kolkata, theNational Law Institute University, Bhopal, national Law University, Jodhput, Gujarat National Law University Gandhinagar andHidayatullah National LawUniversity, Ripur. It may be kept in mind that this list is only illustrative in nature. There are any numbers of law schools that are imparting quality legal education without much publicity and self-marketing.

Fee Structure

The annual fee required to be paid depends on the law school, residential requirement and others factors. In traditional university law colleges it ranges from Rs.15,000 to 20,000 (if hostel facility is offered), and in private law colleges it may range from Rs.25,000 to 40,000 if hostel facility is provided. If no residential requirement is insisted, it may be from Rs.2,500 to 25,000 per annum. In National Law School type institutions, the residence on the campus is compulsory and all the fees put together, one has to pay about Rs.1 lakh every year.

Career Options

There is no dearth of jobs and career options for lawyers.

1. Joining the practice: Hence the lawyer can choose any of the field like Arbitration, Banking Law, Consumer Protection. Civil Law, Criminal Law, Human Rights, employment Law, Company Law, Tax Law, Intellectual property law and management, Constitutional law and Security law.

2. Joining a law firm which specializes in litigation or chamber work or both in any of the above fields.

3. Joining an industry as a law officer. This includes joining a multinational company or even a multinational consultancy firm or a bank. According to an estimate, during the last 3-4 years various multinational companies have hired around several thousands of law-graduates with salaries ranging between Rs.20,000 – 30,000 per month from prestigious law schools /colleges.

4. Joining the judge Advocate General’s office / law cadre of the defense service

5. Joining public and Banking sectors as trainees of probationary law officer.

6. Opting for a Government job. The Government needs law officers. Legal advisors and legal assistants to administer different departments. Further legal professionals are also appointed as public prosecutors, solicitors, deputy or additional advocates-generals or advocate-general.

7. Joining the State Judicial Service. Here officers are recruited through a competitive examination. The Selected candidates are appointed as junior civil judges, or munsifs in courts or also as chief judicial magistrates.

8. Working as freelance journalists and contribute to newspapers or joining a publishing house. They can also work as legal correspondents of many newspapers and journals apart from the electronic media.

9. There are several other areas of specilisation open to lawyers. These include international law, which as the name suggests, deals with treaties and agreements between nations: parents law, which spcialise in securing patents, and prosecute or defend infringements, real estate law, which handles the conveyance of property, establishing titles and handling all such matters dealing with land and so on.

The Legal Process Outsourcing is another emerging arena wherein the foreign companies and clines use the services of Indian Lawyers for whetting of documents and contracts, patent research, case law research and registration of documents etc. it is estimated that about 25,000 lawyers are required every year in this field. Check some websites like http://students.indlaw.com/copportunity.asp and http:// www.aftercampus.com/students_corner/law_1 htm. etc.,for further details).

Selection in all cases is on the basis of merit. However, most universities have an entrance exam conducted in the months of March, April or May every year.

Personal Attributes Required

It is not possible for everyone to become a Nani Palkhiwala, M.C.setalvad or Ram Jethmalani. In order to succeed in the legal profession the essential attributes required for law student or lawyer are an active mind, quick thinking, logical reasoning, powers of concentration, patience, perseverance, ability to argue and discuss matters with all types of people, self confidence, excellent communication skills, ability to express one’s self clearly and a good voice. They require hard work, good interpersonal skills and proficiency in use of information technology in legal profession.



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